“I am only one, but I am one. I cannot do everything, but I can do something. And because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do the something that I can do. What I can do, I should do. And what I should do, by the grace of God, I will do.”
–Edward Everett Hale
April to July 2000
Stone finds a pocket knife with a 4” blade on the floor of a Phoenix to Chicago airplane. Stone takes the knife to O’Hare Airport security and learns that it is legal to carry weapons on airplanes. Stone passes the original knife he found on the airplane and a letter to his congressman, Rod Blagojevich.
In Stone’s April, 2000, letter to Blagojevich, Stone writes, “Airplane passengers are given a false sense of security because they believe that no weapons are allowed beyond the metal detectors.” Stone asks Blagojevich to lobby the FAA and his colleagues in Congress to stop allowing weapons on planes.
In the third of three conversations with Blagojevich’s congressional aide, Stone is told that the FAA won’t change its rule allowing weapons on planes. Stone receives a letter from Blagojevich stating that his office forwarded his concerns about weapons on planes to Congressman William Lipinski. In 2000 William Lipinski was Illinois’ highest ranking FAA Committee member.
Stone writes and calls Chicago Sun-Times newspaperman Richard Roeper after Roeper pens a column about two high-profile cases of airplane rage. Stone purports that if the two men who were violent on the airplane had knives, which they could legally carry aboard a plane, they would have inflicted much greater harm. Stone also faxes Roeper a copy of his April, 2000, letter to Congressman Blagojevich. Note that in 2000 Stone was not seeking publicity or public office when he pushed for the stoppage of weapons on planes. He was an average citizen concerned about the safety of his fellow Americans.
Stone contacts Congressman Rod Blagojevich’s office after stunned Americans speculate on how the September 11 terrorists hijacked four commercial airliners. Congressman Blagojevich calls Stone and tells him, “Jay, we should have listened to you. We should not have allowed weapons on planes.”
In Sept., 2001, letters to Congressmen Blagojevich and Lipinski, Stone says the FAA completely failed in its duty to protect airplane passengers. The FAA’s decision to let weapons on planes allowed the Sept. 11 terrorists to legally board the airplanes with the weapons that they used to hijack the planes.
On Sept. 15, 2001, Stone calls for taking airplane and airport safety away from the people who were in charge of security on Sept. 11. In 2004 Stone is vindicated when United States Department of Homeland Security takes over air safety.
On Sept. 17, 2001, Congressman Lipinksi calls Stone. Lipinski tells Stone that he brought Stone’s concern about allowing weapons on airplanes to the attention of the FAA and Department of Transportation prior to 9/11. Lipinski says it was the FAA and Department of Transportation’s decision to permit weapons on planes, not his.
An FBI Special Agent calls Stone to discuss further Stone’s concerns about threats to America’s air safety. Stone says that small planes also pose a threat to national security, in that small planes can be used as weapons, as the 9/11 hijackers proved with commercial airliners. Unfortunately, Stone’s prediction comes true when a disgruntled man deliberately crashes his small plane into an Austin, Texas, IRS building in Feb. 18, 2010.
Devastated by the events of Sept. 11 and knowing how the FAA, Department of Transportation, and Congress have failed to provide the most basic level of airplane security, Stone considers running for Blagojevich’s congressional seat after Blagojevich announces he is running for governor. Stone decides not to run for Congress after Rahm Emanuel enters the race.
During a 2006 federal court corruption trial, it is revealed that the civil rights of Emanuel’s opponents and those of the voters in his congressional district were violated as the result of Emanuel having been supported by an army of unlawful campaign workers who were employed in the Daley administration.
September 2002 to February 2003
Stone announces his candidacy for 32nd Ward alderman in Sept., 2002. Stone runs on a platform of greater transparency of city government and campaign financing and ethics reform. Stone claims Chicago’s campaign financing, ethics, and election laws limit political competition and give incumbents an unfair advantage over political competitors. During a Jan., 2003, meeting at City Hall, Stone explains his political reforms to Intergovernmental Affairs Commissioner John Doerrer. Stone loses his bid for alderman in Feb., 2003.
September 2004 to March 2008
The FBI uncovers the Daley administration’s 16-year job- and election- rigging scheme. Prospective and current city workers received jobs, promotions, or overtime pay to campaign for candidates favored by Mayor Daley. Special FBI Agent Robert Grant says as many as eight elections for alderman may have been tainted by the Daley administration’s job- and election-rigging scheme. Numerous Daley henchmen plead guilty or are convicted in federal court, including Robert Sorich. The FBI recovers a list containing over 5,000 names on an Intergovernmental Affairs’ computer that Sorich had ordered destroyed.
In May, 2007, attorney Michael Shakman settles a class action political discrimination lawsuit against the City of Chicago. Political candidates, organizations, job applicants, and city workers are invited to submit a claim for part of the $12 million civil rights settlement.
Stone submits a 24-page Shakman claim with 11 exhibits that contain 54 additional pages. Stone’s claim also includes federal court testimony. The basis of Stone’s claim is as follows:
1. Stone met with Intergovernmental Affairs Commissioner John Doerrer and told Doerrer of his ideas for campaign financing, ethics, election, and transparency reforms.
2. Donald Tomczak testified at the Sorich trial that he took his orders from IGA Commissioner John Doerrer, with whom Stone met in 2003.
3. Donald Tomczak further testified that he was in charge of 150 to 250 city workers who doubled as his campaign workers.
4. Under oath Tomczak said Doerrer told him to have his precinct captains campaign on behalf of Stone’s opponent, Alderman Ted Matlak.
5. Stone’s civil rights were violated because at the behest of members of the Daley administration, Chicago taxpayers wrongfully paid for the campaign workers of Stone’s opponent.
Stone is one of 1,400 people who receive a Shakman award. Along with five other civil rights victims, Stone receives the second highest financial settlement. Without knowing or reading the facts of Stone’s claim, Mayor Daley, Alderman Tom Allen (38th), Alderman George Cardenas (12th), and Alderman Eugene Shulter (47th) begin a smear campaign against Stone and federal court monitor Noelle Brennan.
Because of the three aldermen and Mayor Daley’s lies and gross distortions, Brennan asks Stone for his permission to speak publicly about his Shakman claim. During a WTTW TV interview, Brennan says, “Stone submitted compelling evidence. He submitted federal court testimony by the wrong-doer [Donald Tomczak] in this case.”
Stone Successfully Opposes a Daley-Sponsored Olympics
In April, 2008, the Daley administration announces that Aon Corporation received a $40 million City of Chicago personnel contract. Several months later, Aon receives another $7 million contract. In the same year Aon Corporation and Aon Chairman Patrick Ryan spearhead Chicago’s bid for the 2016 Olympics.
Eventually Ryan leaves Aon to work full-time as Chairman of Chicago’s Olympic Committee. Supposedly Aon Corporation donates millions of dollars in human services, office space, and office supplies to Chicago’s Olympic Committee free of charge.
Daley claims Chicago’s bid for the Olympics will not require taxpayer money. Most observers see Aon’s $47 million in contracts as Mayor Daley’s ploy to use taxpayer money to pursue a Chicago Olympics. The profits Aon stood to earn on its city contracts more than make up for Aon’s contributions to Chicago’s Olympics bid.
Stone discovers that in 2007 Aon Chairman Patrick Ryan donated $100,000.00 to Mayor Daley’s campaign fund, and another Aon executive, Michael O’Halleran, donated $25,000.00. Stone alleges Ryan’s and O’Halleran’s contributions to Daley violate Chicago’s ethics ordinance because the campaign contributions were donated to Daley less than one year prior to Aon receiving city contracts. The information Stone discovers about the Aon contracts and the two Aon executives’ contributions are turned over to Chicago’s Office of Inspector General.
Stone sets up nochicagogames.com website in opposition to a Daley-backed Olympics. Stone argues, “Why give Daley billions of dollars to spend and thousands of employees to manage when Daley has already misspent millions of taxpayer dollars and mismanaged thousands of city employees in direct violation of the Shakman federal court decree?”
There are compelling reasons to oppose a Daley-backed Chicago Olympics since Daley’s administration purposely violated the civil rights of millions of Chicagoans multiple times. If Chicago had been awarded the 2016 Olympics, Daley would have used Olympics funds and employees to further enhance his ill-gotten political might.
Stone echoes the thoughts of so many Chicago residents who say, “It isn’t about fighting against a Chicago Olympics. It’s about fighting against Daley and the political machine that violates our civil rights. Simply put, you can’t trust Daley.”
After the Olympics bid fails, Mayor Daley has harsh words for the International Olympics Selection Committee. Daley says that the Selection Committee planned to award the bid to Rio de Janeiro from the start. Daley gives no acknowledgment to those who stood against a Chicago Olympics. Daley takes no personal responsibility for the failure of Chicago’s Olympics bid.
The group from nogameschicago.com website did a phenomenal job of passing along to the International Olympics Committee the opinions of the people who opposed the Chicago Olympics. The Chicago police officers who protested when the International Olympics Committee visited Chicago also influenced the IOC members’ decision.
Just before the Olympics Committee selected Rio, Daley had an approval rating of a dismal 35%, and more than 50% of Chicago residents were against hosting the Olympics. If Chicago had been awarded the Olympics, it would have expanded Chicago’s political corruption for at least 10 or 15 more years.
Campaign Financing and Election Reform
In March, 2009, Stone submits 18 pages of written testimony to the Illinois Reform Commission. Stone also testifies in person before the Illinois Reform Commission members on March 5, 2009. Stone notices that while he is testifying, the commission members become interested in his idea for a unified campaign contribution limit for all cities, counties, and towns in the State of Illinois.
The day after Stone testifies, he sends in two additional pages of written testimony, and he also faxes Florida, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island campaign financing documents to the Reform Commission. These documents are examples of how the three states established one campaign contribution limit for all political offices within each respective state.
For years the City of Chicago operated with no campaign contribution limits. Contributors could donate $100,000.00 or $25,000.00 to a single candidate as Aon executives Ryan and O’Halleran did for Daley. When Daley ran for reelection in 2007, Daley received 54 campaign contributions between $25,000 and $200,000. Besides limiting campaign contributions, Stone also proposes to the Illinois Reform Commission that political campaign contributions should be calculated per election cycle, not per year.
On Dec. 9, 2009, Governor Quinn signs two of the campaign financing laws that Stone initially proposed to the Illinois Reform Commission. Starting January 1, 2011, the City of Chicago will have a $5,000 campaign contribution limit for individuals and $10,000 for companies per election cycle. Gone are the days Daley can hit up his wealthy friends like Ryan and O’Halleran for campaign contributions of $25,000 or more.
For more information on Illinois’ campaign financing and election reform law, visit the State of Illinois’ website and look up Senate Bill, SB1466.
Continuation of the Shakman Monitor
In Dec., 2009, Mayor Daley declares that the city has cleaned up its act and is preparing to go back to federal court to ask Judge Anderson to remove the Shakman monitor from overseeing City of Chicago personnel decisions. Stone writes Judge Anderson to request that Mayor Daley, Aldermen Allen, Cardenas, and Schulter be required to testify about the spurious remarks they made against Stone and Noelle Brennan. Furthermore, Stone says that Mayor Daley and the aldermen’s comments show they are ignorant of the original Shakman Decree. What’s worse, Mayor Daley and the aldermen’s combination of ignorance and arrogance render them unable to follow the mandates of the court without monitoring.
Stone, who was a victim of the Daley administration scheme, asks to testify under oath about the Shakman violations, something Mayor Daley and the three outspoken aldermen have not offered to do. Stone maintains that Mayor Daley and the aldermen’s disparaging comments about him and Noelle Brennan will end up costing taxpayers millions of dollars and demonstrate the need to keep the Shakman monitor in place.
As of July, 2010, eight months have past since Daley declared the city has cleaned up it’s hiring. Presently Daley has not gone to court to ask Judge Andersen to remove the Shakman monitor. If Daley is confident his administration is clean, why hasn’t Daley gone to court? Is it because Daley knows Judge Andersen won’t believe him?
Ballot Access Lawsuit
The Stone et. al. v. the Board of Election Commissioners for the City of Chicago lawsuit is filed in federal court to challenge Chicago’s restrictive ballot access laws. The case is in the capable hands of civil rights attorney Christopher C. Cooper. A three judge panel in the federal court of appeals heard arguments from Cooper and attorneys for the Chicago Board of Elections. Because a Chicago Board of Election attorney provided incorrect information to the court, the case is back in front of federal court Judge Robert M. Dow Jr.